Nursing students such as health care workers are at risk of needle stick/sharps injuries. However, little attention has been paid by researchers to this topic. The objective of this study was to describe the frequency, causes and practice of nursing students in contaminated needle stick/sharps injuries.
This is a descriptive cross-sectional study conducted in Arak University of Medical Sciences in 2009. 227 nursing students were participated in study. A questionnaire, consisting two sections of demographic information and questions about exposure to needle stick/sharps injuries was completed by students.
70% and 43% of the subjects had experienced at least one contaminated NSIs in total education period and the past 12 months, respectively. The average number of injuries per student was 1.02 times/student/year. Approximately 40 percent of the injuries were not reported to the clinical educator. The first action after incidents in 51.6 % of the subjects was squeezing the wound. After incidents, 64.22 % tracking patients’ tests for blood-borne pathogens and 10% of the subjects did not perform any action following incidents.
Needle stick/sharps injuries were highly prevalent in nursing students. More education programs should be directed at students to increase their awareness of about needle stick/sharps injuries and about the actions after the incident.